EDWIN AHENKORAH missed a first-half penalty as Rugby Town’s FA Vase adventure came to an end at the fifth round stage after suffering a 2-0 defeat at North Shields.
Ahenkorah shot wide from the spot on 24 minutes after Chris McDonald had opened the scoring for the hosts on 11 minutes in front of more than 1,000 supporters at the Daren Persson Stadium.
And Dan Wilson sealed the win for the competition favourites with a penalty on 75 minutes as Rugby’s hopes of lifting the Vase for the first time since 1983 were dashed.
Rugby were without manager Carl Adams on the touchline after he received a two-match ban for his red card at Stourport in December with assistant Justin Marsden and injured captain Loyiso Recci deputising in his absence.
And North Shields scored with their first attack when McDonald angled a low finish past Valley goalkeeper Ash Bodycote from Wilson’s intelligent flick.
After referee Paul Cooper turned down strong appeals for a home penalty, Rugby were awarded a spot kick at the other end when David Kolodynski was brought down by keeper Olly Marshall.
However, despite sending the goalkeeper the wrong way, Ahenkorah guided the ball the wrong side of the left hand post.
Valley came close to drawing level towards the end of the half when Danico Johnson fired a half-volley over before seeing a scuffed effort saved after playing a neat one-two with Kolodynski.
And Rugby picked up where they left off after the break when a timely interception prevented Caine Elliott from heading Valley level.
The home side could have sealed the win when Bodycote made a mess of a wind-assisted clearance only for Brad Hird to be denied by a superb block from Keenah Rosser before stabbing the rebound wide.
North Shields enjoyed their best spell of the match before eventually doubling their lead when Wilson stroked home from the spot after Jamal Clarke was penalised for handball from McDonald’s long throw.
Dan Summerfield blazed over for Valley late on as the visitors were unable to find a way back into the game and saw their impressive run in the Vase come to an end.
Rugby are next in action at home to Harborough Town on Saturday, February 19 with kick-off at 3pm at Butlin Road.